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Warhammer 40K: Dark Millennium is an MMO No More

THQ shifting to a single-player focus, over 100 employees laid off.

Financial woes at THQ have brought many titles being developed for the publisher under scrutiny.  While some titles have been scrapped altogether, other titles, such as the planned MMO Warhammer 40K: Dark Millennium, have been “refocused” – changed to fit into their evolving new strategy of serving the hardcore gamer.

The company announced that Dark Millennium will no longer be released as an MMO and will instead be pared down to a robust, single-player game with an online multiplayer component.  The game will support expansion through optional digital content (DLC), but details on what this content may entail as well as what platforms the game will appear on have not been revealed at this time.

THQ President and CEO, Brian Farrell, said the dramatic shift was made due to “changing market dynamics and the additional investment required to complete the game as an MMO.” 

As a result of this change in direction, THQ internal studios at Vigil Games and Relic Entertainment will have their teams reduced by 79 and 39 full-time employees respectively. 

Press Release

THQ Announces Update for Warhammer® 40,000®: Dark Millennium™
Project Shifts from MMO Business Model

AGOURA HILLS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Mar. 29, 2012-- THQ Inc. (NASDAQ:THQI) today announced that it has refocused Warhammer® 40,000®: Dark Millennium™ from a Massively Multiplayer Online game to an immersive single player and online multiplayer experience with robust digital content, and engaging community features. Further product details, platforms and release timing will be announced at a later date.

“As previously announced, we have been actively looking for a business partner for the game as an MMO. However, based on changing market dynamics and the additional investment required to complete the game as an MMO, we believe the right direction for us is to shift the title from an MMO to a premium experience with single and multiplayer gameplay, robust digital content and community features,” said Brian Farrell, President and CEO of THQ Inc. “Because we believe strongly in the high-quality and vast creative work that is in production, this is the right decision for both our portfolio and for gamers devoted to this powerful property.”

“We are genuinely excited about the new direction that THQ is taking with Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millennium, and we are sure that this will be a great addition to the ever growing stable of authentic and engaging Warhammer 40,000 video games,” said Jon Gillard, Head of Licensing for Games Workshop.

As a result of this change, team sizes at two THQ internal studios will be reduced by 79 full-time employees at Vigil Games in Austin, Texas, and 39 employees at Relic Entertainment in Vancouver, B.C.

Vigil Games will continue to focus on both this game and the critically-acclaimed new title, Darksiders® II, scheduled for release this summer. Relic Entertainment continues to focus its development expertise on THQ’s franchises including Company of Heroes® and Warhammer® 40,000®: Dawn of War®.

About THQ

THQ Inc. (NASDAQ: THQI) is a leading worldwide developer and publisher of interactive entertainment software. The company develops its products for all popular game systems, personal computers, wireless devices and the Internet. Headquartered in Los Angeles County, California, THQ sells product through its global network of offices located throughout North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. More information about THQ and its products may be found at THQ and the THQ logo are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of THQ Inc.

Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millennium, Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War - Copyright © Games Workshop Limited 2004 - 2012. Dark Millennium, Dark Millennium Online, the Dark Millennium Online logo, Dawn of War, the Dawn of War logo, Dawn of War 2, the Dawn of War 2 logo, GW, Games Workshop, the Games Workshop logo, 40K, Warhammer, Warhammer 40,000, Warhammer 40,000 Device, 40,000, the Double-headed Eagle device and all associated marks, logos, places, names, creatures, races and race insignia/devices/logos/symbols, vehicles, locations, weapons, units and unit insignia, characters, products, illustrations and images from the Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millennium game, the Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millennium Online game, the Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War game, the Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War 2 game and the Warhammer 40,000 universe are either ®, TM and/or © Games Workshop Ltd 2000-2012, variably registered in the UK and other countries around the world, and used under license. All Rights Reserved.

THQ Inc. Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains statements that are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are based on current expectations, estimates and projections about the business of THQ Inc. and its subsidiaries (collectively referred to as “THQ”), including, but not limited to, expectations of video game console and software growth, financial guidance, estimated release dates and the potential for online gaming. These statements are based upon management’s current beliefs and certain assumptions made by management. Such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, including, but not limited to, business, competitive, economic, legal, political and technological factors affecting our industry, operations, markets, products or pricing. Readers should carefully review the risk factors and the information that could materially affect THQ’s financial results, described in other documents that THQ files from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal period ended March 31, 2011 and subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, and particularly the discussion of trends and risk factors set forth therein. Unless otherwise required by law, THQ disclaims any obligation to update its view on any such risks or uncertainties or to revise or publicly release the results of any revision to these forward-looking statements. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release.




03/30/2012 at 12:19 PM

I don't have anything against THQ so I hope they manage to survive all these layoffs and find a way to stay afloat while making good games. I love the Warhammer 40k universe so I'll definitely support this new 40k game and THQ. I still want to buy and play Space Marine really bad, but Dark Millenium will definitely end up on that list as well. For the Emperor!

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Press Release

THQ Announces Update for Warhammer® 40,000®: Dark Millennium™
Project Shifts from MMO Business Model

AGOURA HILLS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Mar. 29, 2012-- THQ Inc. (NASDAQ:THQI) today...